Skyrocketing home prices mean fewer rental suites available 

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And when these buildings are paid off in 20 to 25 years the community will have an enduring legacy of assets: the land and buildings, plus significant cash flow from net rental income to address the housing needs of the future.

The key will be managing the housing appropriately so those benefits will flow to the community.

Currently there are approximately 3,850 employee-restricted beds. They are in a variety of accommodations, ranging from dormitory-style short term rental units to single family subdivisions.

The goal is to have 4,800 by 2003.

Any new housing developments will have to be done in partnership with private companies, as there is no more housing fund money to buy land and develop it.

At the moment the possibility for locals to get employee-restricted housing is greater through resale of a home than it is from waiting for the next housing development.

Currently there are about three resales a month. All the resales are handled through the WHA.

"Up until now most people were thinking about the next project," said Wake.

"Now we have over 500 employee-restricted units that are owned, so the resales are increasing."

The units are sold through the waitlist system.

Prospective buyers must be employed or self-employed for a minimum of 20 hours a week for the last 12 months within the resort boundaries.

And as of July 1, 2002 all buyers must be pre-approved for a mortgage.

Owners can only sell to others on the wait list and the resale value of the unit is controlled by the WHA based on the Housing Price Index for Greater Vancouver.

The idea behind this is to keep the price low so the dream of owning a home can come true.

That dream means a lot.

Wake fondly recalls the day he got flowers to mark the one-year anniversary of a local couple’s move into their Beaver Flats home.

"That’s how much this can mean to people," said Wake, a passionate believer in creating and keeping community in the resort.

"We have an opportunity here to preserve what is a great community and my kids are growing up in it.

"I think this plays a part. There is some grief we have to put up with but there is so much satisfaction when just one person says, ‘Oh, you got me a home. Thanks.’"

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